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Beastwood - The Long Road To Ho

The Long Road To Ho
by Matt Bozenda at 22 August 2021, 12:32 PM

No one can be blamed for occasionally getting swept up in enthusiasm. You really want this team to win, you really want this beer to taste good, and you really want this band to blow you away. But, it doesn’t always work out, y’know? Teams can lose, beers can be awful, and bands can leave you no worse for the wear. We all want to experience a seismic shift, and some want to so badly they’ll call it for every slight tremor.

Well, don’t be surprised if you’re cautiously optimistic about what’s come lately from Casper, Wyoming’s own BEASTWOOD. Newly signed with Coffin & Bolt Records, the label has chosen to re-release the band’s 2019 independent EP “The Long Road To Ho”, a stark departure from the band’s sophomore album, 2013’s “Alabama Space Witch”. Where that album suggested a Sludgy Southern Metal signature, a bit of grease seems to have been applied to the new stuff; while they’re holding on to the EYEHATEGOD vibes from before, they discovered how to also have fun like NASHVILLE PUSSY.

That said, track one, “Electric Gangbang”, is less of a CLUTCH impression and more an impersonation, for better or worse. Much the same can be said of “Denim Venom”, though it is somewhat heavier. Some keen listeners might recognize some lyrics from “Girls Of Gold”, which is, in fact, an homage to The Golden Girls, that imminently metal television show.

The star of this EP, however, and an entry for the All-2021 Playlist, has to be another homage track, “Degenerated”. Covering the version by the fictional band THE LONE RANGERS (in turn a loose cover of the real REAGAN YOUTH track), and featuring a clip from the ‘Airheads’ film for an introduction, the listener gets a greater sense of what the band seems to be attempting. It’s intense and light-hearted at the same time, which seems to be BEASTWOOD’s motive now.

And good for them, if that’s what they want to do. For “The Long Road To Ho”, they’ve avoided being a parody band in the fashion of LORDI, and even while embracing their fun side they still are taking the job seriously, such as the effort given by the likes of PARTY CANNON. Still, on an EP where three out of four tracks sound like covers and the fourth track IS a cover, there’s not much reason to believe any forthcoming album will be any more dynamic, whether it’s five tracks or two dozen.

We know the guys can play, and if their press shots are any indicator, they’re not afraid to put themselves out there for all to see. Reaching out to songwriters may do the trick, but doing it for themselves is what they’ll have to do to really break through. The third album must be all their own if BEASTWOOD expects to climb any higher.

Musicianship: 7
Songwriting: 5
Memorability: 7
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

1. Electric Gangbang
2. Denim Venom
3. Girls Of Gold
4. Degenerated
Tanner - bass
Jeff - drums
Blake - guitars
Jake - vocals
Record Label: Coffin & Bolt Records


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